The growing case for Green Procurement as an engine of growth

A proposition which is gaining increasing traction in the debate around green procurement is about a shift in focus from Green for its own sake, to Green as an engine for growth and as an indicator to investors of business efficiency.

This report from the International Institute for Sustainable Development and the Partnership for Procurement and Green Growth explores the correlation between public procurement and the tipping point at which it serves as a trigger for green industrial innovation, expansion and growth.

The authors make and support the argument that procurement is becoming more than just a purchasing tool, but is increasingly positioned as an economic driver, an incentive for green innovation and green industrialisation, a support for small and medium enterprise (SME) competitiveness and much more.

At the core of the report are 15 in-depth case studies gathered from within industry and the public sector to share experiences in applying procurement to the achievement of green growth aims.

From our perspective, this is a very plausible justification for using procurement as a tool for implementing economic, social and environmental policy. Hang on a minute – aren’t we already doing that in the UK by means of the Public Services (Social Value Act) 2012? Ah yes, it slipped my mind. The Social Value Act is a toothless and pointless piece of bureaucracy that won’t achieve its objectives but WILL swallow up the scarce resources of contracting authorities as they thrash around trying to comply with it.

There. I’ve sat on the fence again…

The full text of the IISD report is here:

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